Life on the Lusitania
The long national nightmare is over. The nightmare of our politicians goofing around with the budget until we almost had to shut down the Smithsonian for the weekend and quit paying people? Well, that, too, but I’m talking about MY nightmare.
I had to drive my mom’s big green 94 Lincoln Continental for 10 days.
Oh, I was glad to have a car for my use, but there were just a couple of little things:
The car is the size of the Lusitania. (I could have said “Titanic” there, but somehow Lusitania is just a funnier name, don’t you think?)
The car has white leather seats and I have a big, muddy dog. See: brown-streaked white leather seats and drool marks on the windows. Also, Goldie slid around on those leather seats like a cartoon character on a banana peel. Poor dog.
The advances in cup-holder technology in the past 17 years have been truly stunning. Or, I suppose, the lack of cup-holder technology in 1994 is what has me baffled. There are two sets of cup-holders in the car. Two on the floor are about 1/2 inch deep and bigger than the average travel mug. Who figured out the physics behind THIS genius idea? They are not so much cup holders as cup surrounders. That little half-inch lip doesn’t do anything except help the cup tip over, as it does within 10 seconds of hitting the gas pedal.
The other cup holders, which flip out from the pull-down arm rests, have a front and back but no sides. Because no one ever goes around corners in cars? Seriously. As soon as you make a left-hand turn, the cup tips into your lap, conveniently pouring hot coffee onto your work slacks. Or if you turn right, it tips onto the formerly white leather seats.
I spent a lot of time driving the Lusitania and musing on what led engineers to be so stupid in 1994. Did they not care that the cup holders didn’t work? Did they not know about ordinary physics and mechanics? Did they not know that cup holders are the single most important part of a car?
Anyway. I got a new car yesterday. It isn’t as cute as the Fit, but it has perfectly sufficient cupholders. And heated leather seats. And a 100,000 mile warranty. And most important, Goldie likes it. It’s a Hyundai Elantra Touring with all kinds of bells and whistles.
I got it through the Costco buying program, which I highly recommend. You fill out a form at the Costco website, they let the dealer know you are interested, you do all the test-driving and tire-kicking, then the dealer gives you a Costco-negotiated price. This car was $300 below dealer invoice. Yay.
Don’t look for me online. I will be out driving around, enjoying my new cup-holders.